Things were looking good in Memphis...until they weren’t.
Halfway through the fourth quarter the Grizzlies had a 13 point lead and looked to be on their way to a 6-1 start. Unfortunately for them, Kemba Walker had other plans. Charlotte’s electrifying point guard sparked an 18-4 run late in the game to help lift the Hornets over the Grizzlies 104-99.
Part of this collapse can be attributed to Memphis’ struggles shooting the ball, hitting only 34% of their shots for the game, including a rough 6 for 27 in the fourth quarter. Both Mike Conley and Marc Gasol had troubles with their shot, Conley missed all 7 of his three point attempts while Marc shot 26.7% overall. In a game where the Grizzlies’ best players couldn’t get it done, the rest of the squad would have to step up to keep them in the game and once again they did, outscoring the Hornets’ bench 51-39.
Memphis’ bench has been a consistent bright spot this season and one of the biggest catalysts behind their now 5-2 star. Tyreke Evans has arguably been the biggest part of that. He led Memphis in scoring with 19 points, 10 rebounds and 3 assists. Evans signed with Memphis on a one year, $3 million prove-it deal and so far, he’s proving that he is a play-maker that the Grizzlies desperately needed. Brandan Wright, Dillon Brooks and James Ennis III also turned in solid performances, but it just wasn’t enough.
Kemba Walker and Jeremy Lamb led Charlotte’s comeback bid, combining for 44 points and always seemed to make the plays to keep the Hornets in the game. While it is early in the season, this win meant a lot for Charlotte, it was the Hornets first win on the road, as well as the Grizzlies first loss within the confines of the FedExForum.
The Grizzlies look to rebound Wednesday as they take on the Orlando Magic.